Superintendent's Letter: January 21, 2022
Dock Parents and Students,
Today we celebrate the completion of the first semester! We are grateful to have kept our campuses open and we are seeing the value of having students engaged in learning together. We care deeply about our students’ emotional health as they have faced a challenging, yet hopeful year.
We continue to be in communication with the Montgomery County Office of Public Health (MC OPH) and work with our nursing staff through this COVID journey. Our two primary goals are to keep students safe and to keep our students in school as much as possible. It is clear we are now transitioning to practices more common with other serious diseases and less similar to protocols for a pandemic. Below are some of those changes:
- We will no longer be doing extensive contact tracing for all students identified as close contacts based on exposure in the school setting.
- We will focus our efforts on identifying high risk students who may have had a school exposure. If your child is at a greater risk of severe illness based on their health history and our nurses may not be aware of that, please contact our nurses at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Our nurses now have the capability of doing limited and targeted rapid testing for COVID in certain situations for symptomatic students. Tests would only ever be done with parent permission. Nurses will contact you if your child is eligible for testing in a specific situation.
- In the case of a student who has tested positive for COVID or has been identified as a close contact outside of the school setting, our nurse will outline a procedure that could allow your child to continue in school or return to school sooner if certain protocols are followed. That varies by situation and would be outlined for you at that time.
We ask you to continue to follow these guidelines:
- Daily monitor symptoms of your child and notify the nurse if there are symptoms before sending your child to school.
- Report positive tests or close contacts outside the school setting to our nursing staff.
- We encourage following general recommended mitigation measures such as personal hygiene, masking, and social distancing.
- Always contact us if you have any questions.
- Continue to be patient with each other as we navigate this challenging journey!
Thanks for your understanding and cooperation. In terms of COVID, better days are ahead, but regardless of the COVID path, we look forward to a great second semester!
Be encouraged with Galatians 6:9-10a. So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest time, if we do not give up. So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good of all.
Have a great weekend,
Dr. Conrad Swartzentruber
Read all of the Superintendent's Letters:
"I just want to take a moment to say thank you. It is obvious that Dock has spent time and prepared a plan that takes into account the many different thoughts, opinions, concerns, and frustrations of all families during this pandemic. While it is impossible to please everyone, it is clear the two options you have outlined have the biggest probability of satisfying the majority of your families. Providing two options is so refreshing and I realize this will be much extra work for your staff and teachers…thank you! This will be our oldest child's first year at the school, and we could not be more pleased with our choice of Dock!"
Dock Elementary Family
"I am confident in the decisions made by the administration, board and pandemic team. There are two options, on-campus learning or remote learning, for Early Childhood through 12th grade. Thank you, Dock administrators, for spending your summer planning for the fall. I know many families from other schools are concerned about the options available to them. Dock has a large facility with a smaller number of students, so safety, academics, and social interactions will not be compromised!"